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ASYMMETRICAL OWL EARS
Matt Troutman writes..
> One of the coolest aspects of owls in my opinion is their adaptation
> to hunting. Their eyes are rotated completely forward and are huge
> (literally like golf balls); their eyesight is tremendous. Coupling
> good eyesight are the facial disks that pick up sound like radar.
> Couple this with a very strong beak and feet that are probably the
> strongest in the avian world, and their stealthy flight, they are
> probably the best dinosaurian hunters that ever evolved.
Matt Matt Matt, you forgot to mention the fact that some (all?) owls
have asymmetrically positioned ears: one ear is literally higher up
one side of the head from the other. This aids directional hearing. A
question I have never had answered is if, in the species that
exhibit it (I know that _Tyto alba_ does), this asymmetry is constant
throughout populations (i.e. all individuals have the left ear higher
than the right, or vice versa), or is subject to individual
Such a shame that the coolest owls of them all, the giant Cuban
ornimegalonychids and the Hawaiian goshawk-mimicking
grallistrigines, are extinct.